CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Former Kanawha County legislator Mark Hunt says he has a lot of fresh ideas to bring to the table if he were to be elected West Virginia’s next Attorney General.
Hunt, a Democrat, was the third candidate to declare a run for the position in 2016 last week, including incumbent Patrick Morrisey, would like to see the Attorney General have more power in the Mountain State.
“Attorney General in West Virginia is quite limited by statute. The statute limits the role to basically writing opinions and giving advice,” he said on MetroNews “Talkline” with Hoppy Kerchevel last week. “There’s only six or seven people that can ask for those opinions. And those opinions are not binding.”
One thing Hunt said he would like to change is to reinstate the consumer protection division, which he said was civil law. Morrisey has spent a lot of his time recently trying to rollback EPA regulations that could hurt the coal industry even further. Hunt thought that was the right attitude, but said Morrisey has gone about it the wrong way.
“The war on the EPA should continue because certainly the war on us, the war on coal continues. So we need the Attorney General to pick up and do those things,” Hunt said. “This Attorney General has not been successful. How I distinguish myself against Morrisey is over the 22 years I’ve practiced law, I’ve had to be successful with my clients.”
Hunt promised to stand up for coal, saying that he’s not a far left Democrat by any stretch.
“I think I’m more of a conservative Democrat than a liberal Democrat. I’ve always voted and been endorsed by the coal associations, and really all the businesses throughout West Virginia,” he said. “I am not a Barack Obama Democrat.”
If Hunt wants a shot at ending Morrisey’s reign as Attorney General, he’ll have to defeat Charleston city Councilman David Higgins in the Democrat primary.